Act Six Graduates First Seven
The first cadre of Act Six students will graduate this spring. Seven of the original nine students will receive their degree, and another student will graduate in December. That marks a graduation rate of 89 percent.
Act Six is a leadership and scholarship initiative that provides opportunity for student leaders from urban Portland to develop leadership skills, earn a four-year scholarship, step out of their comfort zones and make a difference on campus and in their communities.
“The past four years at George Fox was a blessing to me and my family,” SuiFeng Liu said. “I met so many amazing people who have shaped my life and formed me into the person I am today. I am so grateful for the most incredible last four years of my life, and I have George Fox University to thank for that.”
This fall, the fifth cadre will begin classes. Of the nine students who will be here, 89 percent are first-generation college students. Five are men, four are women, and they come from a variety of ethnic and denominational backgrounds. The group’s average GPA is 3.6.
No Debate About Speech Team’s Success
In spite of its relatively small size, the George Fox speech and debate team has won more than 40 awards at regional tournaments since the fall term. Achievements include two first-place sweepstakes awards at the 80th Mahaffey Memorial Tournament, hosted by Linfield, and the Scheller Forensics Extravaganza, hosted by Pacific. The team’s success is substantially impressive considering the size of the team: 14 members.
The George Fox forensics team is a member of the Northwest Forensics Conference, representing colleges and universities in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Utah and California. George Fox’s award-winning speech and debate team offers students the opportunity to compete on a national level with other colleges and universities in both individual events (persuasion, informative, extemporaneous, and impromptu, etc.) and British Parliamentary Debate. The team attends six to seven tournaments a year to compete in speech and debate events and meets once a week for two hours to practice.
Free the 43
Students, staff and faculty donned bright yellow shirts from Nov. 29 through Dec. 3 to bring awareness to a social justice issue that gained international attention. The shirts, which said “Free the 43,” referred to 43 health care workers who had been unjustly detained in a Filipino military prison for 297 days.
Melanie Newell, coordinator for the Center for Peace and Justice, had visited the captives previously, and she organized students on campus to start petitions. Several hundred members of the George Fox community signed the petitions that went to Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) and Filipino President Benigno Aquino III.
The workers, known as the Morong 43, were released on Dec. 16.
Go online: Watch an interview with Melanie Newell about the “Free the 43” effort.